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Re: Relationship to other WCAG in BP2 draft

From: Sean Owen <srowen@google.com>
Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2008 12:07:43 -0500
Message-ID: <e920a71c0802180907l698573e6ie6be745dd630e35e@mail.gmail.com>
To: achuter.technosite@yahoo.com
Cc: "MWI BPWG Public" <public-bpwg@w3.org>

On Feb 18, 2008 3:41 AM, Alan Chuter <achuter@technosite.es> wrote:
>
> The "1.5 Relationship to other Best Practices and recommendations"
> section says "These recommendations follow in the footsteps of the
> BP1, and as such are in part derived from the Web Content
> Accessibility Guidelines [WCAG]." I'm not convinced of the usefulness
> of this statement, which sounds like a bit of name-dropping. I think
> it causes more confusion than it clarifies.

I suspect that BP2, whatever it is, won't begin life by borrowing from
WCAG this time. This statement was far more true in BP1, and
nevertheless maybe cause a few people to pause and be confused. I
agree, if asking me, I'd just elide this reference to WCAG.

> One of the advances in WCAG 2.0 is that it is device-independent.
> Translated to MWBP this would mean making the BPs independent of the
> DDC. Another is that the WCAG success criteria are testable. While I
> wouldn't suggest excluding BP that are untestable, it would be useful
> to indicate in the document which ones are testable and likely to be
> included in conformance.

My broken record will come out here. It's probably more appropriate
for WCAG to express general principles than particular practices. It
would be nice, but not essential, to tell people how these principles
can be applied in practice too.

BPs, being about practice foremost, has a different mandate. I am not
sure it's possible to talk about "practice" without talking about real
technologies or a profile of some fictitious, yet plausibly real
device. I don't think anybody's suggesting saying the word "iPhone",
but not mentioning HTML, touch screens, display dimensions, etc. seems
impossible.

I also don't like the idea of writing about a Best Practice that
nobody can really test. Certainly nothing like that can go into
mobileOK, which is probably the analog of WCAG success criteria. So we
seemed to have allowed the luxury of writing untestable BPs like
"TESTING" last time, and while that's not completely out of the
question, I do think we should avoid this this time around. TESTING,
in retrospect, was not a bad Best Practice, but simply said little.
Done again, maybe we'd have dumped it.

But then we would have had 59 BPs instead of 60, and round numbers are
comforting. This is why the US named Hawaii its 50th state of course,
and why Puerto Rico simply can't be one.
Received on Monday, 18 February 2008 17:07:57 UTC

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